Erick Aguirre


Liga MX giants Monterrey play host to Columbus Crew in the second leg of the Concacaf Champions Cup semifinals at Estadio BBVA Wednesday night.

The first leg was a closely-contested battle between the two North American clubs, with the reigning MLS champions Columbus coming out on top 2-1 at Lower.com Field. Crew talisman Cucho Hernandez opened the scoring in the 25th minute before Maxi Meza’s equalizer just before the 60th minute mark.

Canada international Jacen Russell-Rowe put the Crew back in front in the 72nd minute and would hold on for the narrow victory against one of the best teams in the region in Rayados.

Despite the Crew’s advantage, they won’t be able to sit back and park the bus against Monterrey Wednesday night and hope that their one-goal lead will suffice for safe passage to the final. This isn’t how Columbus boss Wilfried Nancy operates, either, and his side will have to play on the front foot versus a Monterrey side that will throw everything but the kitchen sink at the Crew’s defense.

Here is 90min’s guide to Monterrey vs Columbus Crew.

Monterrey

Columbus Crew

Necaxa 2-5 Monterrey – 28/04/2024

Columbus Crew 0-0 CF Montreal – 27/04/2024

Columbus Crew 2-1 Monterrey – 24/04/2024

Columbus Crew 2-1 Monterrey – 24/04/2024

Club Leon 2-0 Monterrey – 20/04/2024

Columbus Crew 2-2 Portland Timbers – 20/04/2024

Monterrey 3-3 Tigres – 13/04/2024

Real Salt Lake 0-0 Columbus Crew – 13/04/2024

Monterrey 3-1 Inter Miami – 10/04/2024

Tigres 1-1 Columbus Crew (3-4 pen.) – 09/04/2024

Country

TV channel/live stream

United Kingdom

Concacaf GO

United States

TUDN, FS1

Canada

OneSoccer

Erick AguirreErick Aguirre

Erick Aguirre is a doubt against Columbus / Jam Media/GettyImages

Fernando “Tano” Ortiz’s first-choice right-back Erick Aguirre is a doubt for the decisive clash with a thigh injury. His expected return is unknown and Gerardo Arteaga could slide over from left-back in the meanntime.

Veteran winger Jesus Corona is also a doubt for the game, as the former Sevilla and FC Porto player is dealing with a knock. Rayados have a plethora of wingers that can stake his place in the XI like Maxi Meza, Jesus Gallardo and Jordi Cortizo.

Monterrey predicted lineup vs Columbus Crew ( 4-5-1 ): Andrada; Arteaga, Guzman, Moreno, Gallardo; Meza, Rodriguez, Canales, Romo, Cortizo; Vazquez.

Columbus Crew v Charlotte FCColumbus Crew v Charlotte FC

Mohamed Farsi misses out through injury / Steve Limentani/ISI Photos/GettyImages

Mohamed Farsi is the main injury concern for Nancy heading into Wednesday night, as the wing-back is recovering from a groin injury and should return to action in late May. Expect to see Alexandru Matan play in a more defensive role at right wing-back in his place.

Backup goalkeeper Evan Bush is also expected to miss the game with an arm injury and will be sidelined through late May. While Patrick Schulte starts in between the sticks for the Crew, Nicholas Hagen becomes the team’s new No. 2.

Columbus Crew predicted lineup vs Monterrey ( 3-4-3 ): Schulte; Moreira, Camacho, Cheberko; Matan, Morris, Nagbe, Amundsen; Russell-Rowe, Hernandez, Rossi.

It’s all setting up to be an intriguing encounter between Rayados and the Crew at Estadio BBVA, and Monterrey will be favorites to progress to the final given their strong squad that will play in front of their passionate supporters. It’s also important to note that a one-goal difference isn’t an insurmountable challenge for Monterrey, especially at their home ground.

Brandon Vazquez and Sergio Canales will propel Rayados to a 3-1 triumph over Nancy’s Crew and will reach the Champions Cup final for the first time since 2021.

Prediction: Monterrey 3-1 Columbus Crew



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